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  • Claire McFarlane

It's okay to be sad...

Tonight as I sit here, tears streaming down my face, not quite sure if what I’m doing makes any sense. Struggling with the harshness of the world and the violence of humanity. Contemplating why another hurdle has been thrown into my path. Trying to convince myself that it’s okay to feel angry, desperate, vulnerable and so tired.

As I sit here and attempt to cajole myself back to a sense of well-being, I realise that in my pursuit to follow my purpose, I’ve forgotten what is important. I’ve forgotten to love myself. I’ve let slip all the practices that I had put in place to find balance, especially my mediation. I allowed myself to become distracted by the noise and forget to enjoy this very moment in time. I’ve let complexity dictate, whereas simplicity is my vision.

I guess this all sounds a little confusing but confused is what I am. I can’t run away now but I do need to understand why I feel like I’m on the verge of sabotage.

Fortunately I know I’m not alone. Any one in this world who has pursued their dreams or taken the risk to live an authentic life might understand what I’m going through right now. Well, that’s what I’m telling myself and it’s making me feel better.

In my journey to find personal healing, I’ve learnt a lot from books. Last year I read a profound book by Deepak Chopra, Debbie Ford and Marianne Williamson called The Shadow Effect. The shadow is that side of us that we deem as bad. All those negative thoughts we might have, the anger we might feel, the bitterness, the fear, the shame, the judgement and lots more. It’s the stuff we are told from our earliest age is unacceptable and were often punished for it. Paradoxly, we need the shadow side to be fully functional, 3 dimensional human beings. When we hide it or try to stop it from existing, it wells up and takes charge when we least want it. You know, those self-sabotage moments.

I’ve denied my shadow side a lot these past few months. Sharing my story publicly means putting on a brave face. I’ve been focussed on portraying this perfect ‘victim’ - the survivor that thrives - the changemaker who has it all together and ready to take on the world. Yes, I am all of that! However, I’m also a woman who has faced extreme violence. I have health issues and work hard at keeping them in check. I’m still grieving the loss of my father who passed away not so long ago. I’m sometimes afraid and doubt my own abilities. I love being in South Africa but the suffering I see every day weighs heavy on my heart. There are times when I feel wildly angry or desperately sad (like tonight). In the end, all this is okay. All of this is my shadow and I need to let it shine through because it’s what makes me real. And hopefully it’s what makes you willing to listen to my story, believe in my journey and stand behind me as I take on the world for other survivors.

Now before my shadow side gets completely narky, or attempts further damage, I’ve off to have a shower, feel miserable, paint my nails red, eat some chocolate and meditate.

Here’s to feeling more human in the morning.

Good night and sweet dreams.

Peace, Harmony, Laughter and Love Xxx


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